• Dresses

    Raspberry Hacked M7948

    Ho Ho Ho, a festive treat today. Remember the last dress I shared? Well I hacked it to make my perfect dress. It’s great for eating and drinking in, dancing in, and attending zoom meetings! Let’s take a look shall we? It’s M7948 view C with sleeves from view D with no frill on them.

    Almond Rock makes McCall's 7948 in raspberry linen, dress pattern hack

    As I said in my last post, I loved the Indigo from Tilly and The Buttons but the armholes never fit quite right, even after a lot of tweaking so M7948 is the perfect replacement dress. I just wanted a different neckline. So I traced my bodice pattern pieces then trimmed off the neckline into a boat neck. Changed the back bodice to be cut on the fold. Next I added a very thin U shaped keyhole to the front bodice. I could have gone a smidge higher in hindsight but oh well. Then I drafted a facing for the keyhole on extra tracing paper.

    The keyhole facing and front keyhole are sewn RST, clipped and turned through. Plus I topped stitched to keep everything flat. Then I made coordinating bias binding to finish the neckline and extend into long neck ties. The finished front can be worn open or tied in a bow.

    Almond Rock makes McCall's 7948 in raspberry linen, dress pattern hack with tiered skirt

    My fabric is absolutely perfect. I ordered it not entire sure what the composition would be. Turns out I should have just trusted the description… It’s a lovely Raspberry linen-look viscose/polyester mix fabric. It’s totally opaque but light and floaty which is my dream combo. The linen texture is a little rougher than real linen but actually make the black and white print pop. The polyester mix makes the handle a little springy but it still presses well. I knew it would look great for the tiered version of the skirt.

    Almond Rock makes McCall's 7948 in raspberry linen, dress pattern hack with elastic hem cuffs

    I ended up cutting the size 12 for the bodice as before, but cut a size 8 skirt so it’s a little less full. On the last version I talked about slimming the sleeves a little. I just took 1cm out of them and then added an elastic cuff hem by creating a thin channel and using 10mm elastic. The sleeves are now perfect to wear under cardigans!

    Almond Rock makes McCall's 7948 in raspberry linen, dress pattern hack dressing the tree

    Final thoughts are this is a great choice for Christmas day which at my house involves lots of food and drink, lounging around playing games and curling up on the sofa at the end of the day. And I like this last photo for showing off my grey hair as it generally still photographs quite brown a lot of the time. My marvellous hair bow is from Beaded by Laura.

  • Dresses

    Super swishy M7948

    A winter’s sewing storytale of sorts…

     I needed more dresses like the Tilly Buttons Indigo for winter but wasn’t enjoying the sleeve and armhole issues which I tried resolving on multiple versions. I liked the loose fit, great canvas for prints, breezy style so I switched to try McCall’s 7948.

    This lovely floaty style is very similar to the Indigo but has a more rounded neckline. It has different skirt options. Plus there are different sleeve lengths and cute sleeve cuff ruffles!

    I actually used the pdf version of the pattern to make the dress as I was testing something out for work send needed to print one of our patterns. I thought why not make it one I want to sew!

    I sewed a straight size 12 with a narrow shoulder adjustment. I chose the tiered skirt which is made from gathered rectangles. It’s marvellously swishy as you can see from my attempts to twirl on camera! It’s a great length and pleasingly roomy but I need to fix two elements.

    The neckline is too high for me. I never wear round styles like this, always preferring boat neck. A new row of stitching on the front neckline, probably a further 1cm or 1.5cm in from the current seam will suffice. And I’ll ease off to meet the existing seam line at the back. That should also help me get it on without using the button loop.


    I’m also going to slim the sleeves a little as they’re a touch boxy. But these are two teeny little things right!? I’ve already made another version with a front keyhole, neck ties and elasticated sleeve hems! It’s in a beautiful raspberry linen look fabric and I’ve worn it several times already. I can’t wait to show you. I see lots more m7948s in my future!!

    A quick note to add I cannot for the life of me remember where I bought this polyester fabric! I feel like it was either Rainbow Fabrics or Simply Fabrics Brixton. But I’ve been hanging onto it for aaaaages. It’s good to sew older things from your stash. Justifies them being in there so long!!


  • Dresses

    Golden girl Zadie

    One of the best bits of a new dress is hanging it up before you wear it to soak it in. Do you do this? It is good when you can finally wear something for the first time though.

    The pattern is the Tilly and The Buttons Zadie dress which I’ve made before and this stunning fabric is Abstract Birds on mustard cotton interlock from Roo-tid. It’s a GOTs certified organic interlock with a lovely rich colour. I was kindly gifted 2m by Carly who designs all the fabric in her shop and even turns them into cute homewear items too!

    Whenever I’m sewing stretch fabric my topstitching can either be twin needle stitched and zigzag stitched. I honestly like both styles. This time I chose a 2 x 2.5 zigzag.

    As per my other versions I made the straight size 4 with 1″ added to the length. In interlock the fit is looser than ponte but I quite like it. Gotta love those triangular insets and pockets!

    Mustard is such a great colour to wear all year round. It’ll pair well with navy tights and brogues in cooler months. And sandals right now! Today I wore it out for ice cream on our little high street. The sun was shining and a jazz band were playing in the bandstand. Not too shabby right?



  • Dresses

    Pass the wine ponte Zadie dress

    Today I’m sharing my solid coloured Ponte Roma dress using the Zadie pattern from Tilly and The Buttons. This is my second version of the dress, my first was colourblocked but I knew a solid version would looks fab.

    Look at the lovely diamond seaming and deep pockets!! The longer sleeve option was my immediate preference to make a cosy version. I love the way the seam lines flow across the bodice into the pockets. A stable thick Ponte Roma is perfect for this pattern as it is warm but not too thick at the various seam junctions.


    There isn’t waist seam the full way around so you don’t get a really snug fit at the waist but I tapered the side seams a little to help create an hourglass shape. Other than that I made no adjustments to the size 4. A 2 x 2.5 zigzag makes a secure seam on Ponte and I used thin ribbon to stabilise my shoulder and waist seams too. The ribbon helps take the weight of the fabric and avoids it stretching out over time.


    I bought the wine coloured ponte a while ago but it’s still in stock. It washes perfectly and the colour is rich and attractive. I get a great amount of compliments when I wear the dress. And it’s perfect for autumn, winter and spring!

  • Dresses

    Roar-some Tilly and The Buttons Seren dress

    Hello hello! It’s been a little while since I wrote on the blog. I’ve only been sewing a little lately but I thought I’d share this Seren dress I made last year.

    Almond fock tiger print stretch crepe midi Seren dress Tilly and the Buttons

    It’s been getting a fair bit of wear this Spring/Summer. The weather comes and goes but paired with a cardigan it looks rather cute. This is how I wore it during Me Made May.

    This dress was actually relegated to my wardrobe for the first year it was made. I made it too tight at the waist by taking it in too much and made the straps too wide. So earlier this year I dug it out, let out the seams and recut the straps.

    The fabric is a fun stretch crepe with white tigers lounging all over it. I wouldn’t recommend stretch fabrics for button down clothes unless they’re loose but I’m a renegade so I don’t take my own advice. I got it from Dalston Mill Fabrics who have an online shop of secret treasures like this.

    I use a loop turner to make straps and these made me scream bloody murder! In hindsight I should have move their position a little. For the covered buttons I love the contrast pop of yellow. They’re made in a similar weight yellow stretch crepe. I still have to make a dress from this crepe. Covered buttons are so polished and quite fun to make. I use a rubber tool to press the pieces together which you can see my tutorial for Love Sewing here.

    Almond fock tiger print stretch crepe midi Seren dress Tilly and the Buttons

    As a friend of the Tilly team I was kindly gifted the paper pattern with no obligations to promote but I love the dress so why wouldn’t I share. I made a size 4 but it was a little roomy under the armpits so I tinkered with the side seams as I mentioned. This is the plain bodice view without the waistband and the midi skirt.

    Almond fock tiger print stretch crepe midi Seren dress Tilly and the Buttons

    On single dart bodices I prefer them to be at the waist. I understand they couldn’t do that because of the tie front view. I could have moved the darts I suppose but pressed ahead regardless. The skirt is a great length if you don’t want to shave your legs properly and is lovely and swishy. Plus now it makes me think of of the show Tiger King.

    Have you made Seren? I’d love to know in the comments. Check out this stripey version from Malin, the Sewing Wife’s classic version and this beauty from Lena with ruffle straps!